For immediate release
July 7, 1999

With A Strong Unity '99 Presence,
NPR To Recruit Journalists of Color in Seattle

Student Radio Project Broadcasts and Webcasts, Workshops and Reception also featured

SEATTLE - With a large delegation of managerial, human resources and news staff at Unity '99 this week, National Public Radio® (NPR®) will be actively scouting new recruits as part of its Expanding Public Radio Opportunities (E-PRO) outreach program. E-PRO is designed to diversify the voices and stories heard on NPR and its 608 member stations across the country. The program recruits and trains public radio journalists through projects such as the Diversity Initiative, which enhances reporters' editorial and technical skills. At Unity '99, NPR will also showcase its ground-breaking Student Radio Project (which teaches broadcasting students how to produce NPR-style reports), lead workshops, and co-host a public broadcasting reception with Public Broadcasting Service (PBS).

Unity '99, taking place at the Seattle Convention Center from July 7-11, is the joint convention of the National Association of Black Journalists, the Asian-American Journalists Association, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and the Native American Journalists Association.

"NPR is dedicated to fostering an environment that values diversity throughout the public radio system," says NPR Vice President, Human Resources Kathleen Jackson. "E-PRO develops the talents and opportunities of journalists, thereby increasing the breadth and excellence of the programs airing on public radio."

NPR is the driving force behind the Student Radio Project, which teaches broadcasting students how to create NPR-style news stories. During the conference, 12 students representing all four Unity '99 journalism associations will produce two daily newscasts, which will be broadcast on NPR member stations KUOW in Seattle and KPLU in Tacoma, and webcast on the Web sites of NPR, Unity '99 and The Freedom Forum. The Student Radio Project is funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

NPR workshops at Unity '99 include "Breaking Into Public Radio" in Room 307 at 4 p.m. on Friday, July 9th and "Unlocking the Doors to Public Radio and Television," a joint workshop with PBS, in Room 204 at 2 p.m. on Saturday, July 10th. NPR and PBS will co-host a reception honoring conference participants from 5-7 p.m. on Friday, July 9th in the Sheraton Metropolitan Room.

E-PRO began in 1998, when NPR received its largest-ever training and recruiting grant -- an $800,000 grant over a two-year period -- from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. The grant is designed to develop the skills and career opportunities of early to advanced level public radio journalists, especially those who are people of color.

Renowned for its journalistic excellence and providing standard-setting news, information and cultural programming, NPR serves a growing audience of 13 million Americans each week on 608 member stations. NPR also distributes programs to radio, satellite and cable listeners in Asia, Africa, Europe and Australia via NPR Worldwide, to military installations overseas via American Forces Network, and throughout Japan via the USEN 440 cable service.